Army ready for Alyssa Valdez return to PLDT ahead of V-League title showdown
Alyssa Valdez has not played a single game for PLDT in the Shakey's V-League Reinforced Conference, but is set to make a comeback in the finals. Dante Peralta

PHILIPPINE Army has vowed to be ready if and when Alyssa Valdez suits up for PLDT Home Ultera when the two heavyweights face off in the Shakey’s V-League Season 12 Reinforced Conference Finals.

According to her coach, Valdez will be playing for the Ultra Fast Hitters in Game One of the best-of-three title series at The Arena on Saturday after sitting out the entire tournament due to injury.

As it is, PLDT is already loaded with experienced and talented players like  skipper Sue Roces, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, and Janine Marciano, aside from American imports Sareea Freeman and Victoria Hurtt.

Army is aware of what the popular Valdez can bring to the team.

“Kung darating (si Alyssa) mas nakaka-challenge,” said Army coach Kungfu Reyes. “Additional scorer pa (sa PLDT), may darating pang seventh man may hakot (na fans) ‘yun eh.”

[See Valdez to rejoin PLDT in time for V-League Finals, says Gorayeb]

Reyes believes PLDT is a formidable team but guarantees Army, a two-time league champion, will give the Ultra Fast Hitters a very good fight.

Army will lean on veterans Tina Salak, Mary Jean Balse, Nene Bautista, Jovelyn Gonzaga, and young guns Royse Tubino and Aby Marano.

“Ang advantage namin 100 percent kaming healthy, kakailanganin namin kundisyon ng katawan, matagal na rin naman kaming team,” said Reyes.

“Matagal na kaming magkakasama at ganoon rin ‘yung kabila meron silang fresh legs, mga bata ang nakuha nila pero magiging edge siguro namin ‘yung leadership pa rin,” he added.

A PLDT win in the title series will giveUltra Fast Hitters coach Roger Gorayeb a sweep of the season titles after earlier bagging the Open Conference crown with PLDT and the Collegiate Conference with National University.

But for the veteran mentor, part of his objective has already been met.

“Basta makarating ng finals masaya na ako,” he said. “Championship, super bonus na ‘yun, grand slam daw pero di ko iniisip ‘yun eh.”

“Ang iniisp ko kasi kung ano ang maganda sa sport, kung ano ang maganda sa V-League, kung ano ang mamarapatin manalo uli kami pero ‘di ko iniisip parang additional na championship lang, pero kasi ego na lang ang pinaiiral mo sa ganyan,” he added.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @meilinlozada